By now almost everyone has heard of Craigslist and if you are a real estate investor you should be sure to use the web site for researching properties. The site allows both homeowners and real estate professionals to post their listings free of charge (subject to change). The listings are clearly marked as “Owner” or “Broker” allowing you to pinpoint for-sale-by-owner (FSBO) listings that are not likely in your local multiple listing service database (MLS). Many homeowners elect to first try to sell their homes on their own in an attempt to save on commissions paid to real estate sales people. For some, the goal may be to offer a slightly lower price so that they can sell the property quickly ( lowering the asking price instead of paying that amount in commissions). This means that prices may be lower than if the home was listed with a real estate company.
Looking at the Wilmington NC real estate listings this morning (out local market), it appears that about 10% of the properties are FSBOs. The site does have a search bar that allows your to filter out the broker listings. Simply type “owner” in the empty box next to “search for”.
If you are looking for rental properties, you may want to consider get pre-qualified prior to diving in too deep. You can find a list of lenders, brokers, and banks offering financing assistance for rental homes online at ForTheBestRate.com. Please note that the rates that are displayed on ForTheBestRate.com are for primary residences and pricing adjustments may apply for investment properties. You’ll need to contact the various companies directly for an accurate quote.